Safaris in Africa

Safaris in Africa, when did it begin?

A guest blog from Mr and Mrs Hog  

My love affair with Africa began in Canada.  When I was twelve, I found my parents copy of Osa Johnson’s book I married Adventure, from there I was hooked.

I read it at night under the covers with a torch when I was supposed to be sleeping and I was captivated. The thought that I might someday get myself on a safari in Africa never crossed my mind. Safaris in Africa were places I went to in dreams.

But 55 years later, we met Christine 01524 242018.  it was contagion at first site, her passion for Africa was infectious and my wife, Penny and I touched down at Kilimanjaro Int’l Airport some six weeks later, and so began, for me, the fulfilment of a dream. My feet on African soil.

For 18 days with our trusty guides we roamed through Northern Tanzania. Our very first safari in Africa, beginning at Arusha NP on the slopes of Mt. Meru where we saw our first Giraffe. It was love at first sight for Penny.

Giraffe on safari in Africa feeding in Arusha NP Tanzania

Giraffe browsing in Arusha NP Tanzania

Our safari continued to Lake Manyara with its Elephants and its soda lake.

Elephant Herd-on safari-in Africa- Lake Manyara NP

Elephant Herd in Lake Manyara NP

Olduvai Gorge known by the Masai as Oldupai, where it struck home that we are all African regardless of where we were born.

Olduvai-Gorge-on safari in Africa- Tanzania-Ngorongoro

View of Oldupai Gorge from the visitor Centre

Our safari continued into The stupendous Serengeti with its endless grasslands black with Wildebeest and countless Zebra and Impala.

Wildebeest-Serengeti-Migration

The Wildebeest on the short grass plains of Serengeti

And finally the breathtakingly majestic Ngorongoro Crater where we caught a fleeting glimpse of the critically endangered Black Rhino.

It was over far too soon, it was the trip of a lifetime, and there is much more to tell, many more experiences to relate including the tale of “the Skink in the Sink” and “the Roar that shook the Tent” but we’ll save them for another day when we can raise a glass or two to Africa.

Victoria Falls-Livingstone-Zambia

The smoke that thunders Victoria Falls

We never expected we’d go back to this magical continent, let alone, enjoy another safari in Africa. In 2013, our daughter accepted a job as a coordinator with a small NGO in Zambia and suddenly the dream of a return became a reality.

The Africa Travel Specialist featured highly once again and our trusty Guru, lover of Safaris in Africa, fine wines and travel came to see us and before long we were once again on board an international flight, this time bound for Zambia.

We travelled to lively Livingstone in Southern Zambia, this trip was in the “green” season, where we spent hours spellbound with wonder at the mighty Victoria Falls, the Smoke that Thunders

There were excursions into Botswana and boat trips on the Chobe River getting close up & personal with feeding Elephants and Hippos.

A Safari in Hwange NP in Zimbabwe, one of the most beautiful places on our planet, where the Eagles danced for us over the waterholes, we saw lions on their kill and watched daily life in countless Elephant families.

Baby elephant-Chobe-Zimbabwe

Baby elephant at play

Not content with just one trip, our safari in Africa love affair continued, and we once again decided to embark on an African Odyssey this time in the dry season September, a fantastic contrast in terms of the animals we saw.

We drove to Kafue, down the long dusty road from Lusaka where we spent idle days boating and watching the river life and at night, nestled snugly in our tent while the Lion’s roars shook the canvas walls.

Hippo in Kafue River Zambia

Hippo enjoying the Kafue River in Zambia

A short flight to Mfuwe, in South Luangwa, the home of the Leopard. We watched and wondered at these beautiful cats going about their daily life.

Leopard-South Luangwa-Zambia

A male leopard watching the world go by in South Luangwa

We spied on herds of Buffalo, families of Elephant and prides of Lions, lazing the day away or marching towards water.

Buffalo herd-South Luangwa-Chobe

A large herd of buffalo often seen in South Luangwa and Chobe Parks

Everywhere we went the bird life was fantastic.

Fish Eagles-Chobe River-Botswana

Two fish eagles on the banks of the Chobe River

Now we are back at home, wondering if we can return – We can only hope we will – a safari in Africa gets in your blood.

Luangwa RIver Sunset-South Luangwa-Zambia

Sunset on the banks of the Luangwa River. A safari in Africa at its best

Go if you can, you’ll never regret it and you will fall in love!

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